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April 19, 2012
FSU Senior Ahjegannie Stanley '12 admits to being a little intimidated during his first day working in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Boston University as part of a summer research experience.
Not only was he working alongside graduate students who are well on their way to earning their doctorates, but he hadn't studied engineering since high school.
"It's not my field, but I was looking for a summer job and I had previous interest in engineering," says Stanley, who is a Geography major at FSU with a concentration in Environmental Studies. "My mom knew the professor who was spearheading the research and she offered me a job."
The goal of the research was to develop and test a low-cost microfluidic chip that could be used for more effective detection and treatment of the influenza virus. Stanley's job was to follow protocols for creating the chip so that the researchers could perform tests with it. He did this during the summer of 2009 and 2010.
"It was a great experience working around a lot of really, really smart people," Stanley says.
This March, the results of the research were published in the peer-reviewed science journal PloS One. The article is titled "Microfluidic Chip for Molecular Amplification of Influenza A RNA in Human Respiratory Specimens," and Stanley is credited as one of the contributors to the study. It can be found online here.
Stanley, a first-generation immigrant from Jamaica, says the graduate students at BU encouraged him to pursue a master's degree in engineering following graduation this spring, but he believes he has discovered his passion at FSU. He's interested in becoming a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) analyst. Last fall, he completed an internship with FSU Professor David Merwin performing GIS work for the town of Framingham.
"Basically we took all this data from a business survey undertaken by the town of Framingham and created various maps that provided a visual representation of the data from the survey," says Stanley, who has a 3.84 Grade Point Average (GPA). "GIS is something that comes pretty naturally to me. I like working with computers."
Following graduation this spring, Stanley hopes to get a job as a GIS analyst and eventually plans to pursue his master's degree in GIS.

About Framingham State University

As Massachusetts' premier state college, Framingham State University offers prepared and motivated students a wide range of challenging undergraduate and graduate programs. Located just 20 miles from Boston, the college offers many options for students to engage in real-world learning both on its quintessential New England campus and in Boston and its thriving MetroWest region.

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Framingham State University

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Phone: 508-620-1220